After Arkansas seceded from the Union in May 1861, Confederate officers began to recruit in the Wittsburg area. Companies B, D, F and K of the 5th Arkansas Infantry Regiment were organized at Wittsburg June 12-14, 1861. David Cross, for whom Cross County is named, led the regiment. Union cavalry in the campaign to capture Little Rock stopped here for supplies and built a fortification on the high ground above town in July 1863, and a patrol of the 3rd Iowa Cavalry skirmished here June 6, 1864. 2,157 Confederates were paroled here in 1865.